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Review of The Surf Hotel

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The Surf Hotel
Ranked #6 of 26 Hotels in Bentota
Reviewed July 13, 2011

I visited Sri Lanka for the 1st time in April 2011 and booked into The Surf for 3 nights after arriving in Bentota and checking out other local hotels. I travel a lot and couldn't believe that they asked me to pre-pay for the 3 nights (US$140 per night) which I reluctantly did using my credit card.

Unfortunately I had to depart after one night due to a personal issue back home and the hotel refused to refund me in cash for the 2nd and 3rd night and promised to refund directly on my credit card within 3-4 days. Two and a half months later I'm still waiting and despite many calls and promises, nothing has eventuated.

It's extremely sad when hotels choose to treat valuable customers like this, knowing full well potential customers will seek reviews on forums such as Tripadvisor especially considering the hotel has a lot going for it in terms of location.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled solo
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6  Thank jubozy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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643 - 649 of 905 reviews

Reviewed June 25, 2011

visited hotel end June 2011 was very enjoyable, hotel has been refurbished to good standard, lovely rooms and fully lited bathroom with wet room shower, lovely fluffy towels and comfy beds. Staff very friendly and were pleased to help you, good food in restaurant and varied menu if nothing on menu you liked (as hotel not full )chef would make you a light meal of your choice eg omelette or toasted sandwich and fries. Waiter were great especiall Ajit, would def stay here again

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank MARIE57WestYorkshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 12, 2011

After we booked our two week holiday we saw the reviews on the trip advisor, they were to say the least quite grim. We arrived with mixed feeling, however first impression was one of how welcoming the staff were and how clean the entrance was. The whole hotel must have been totaly transformed from the one l read about to one of a standard totaly unexpected. Location was perfect right on the beach loads of sun beds, parasols were being added as we left. Rooms referbished to a good standard ,very clean, beds and towels changed every day. Food was excellent , good choice and well cooked. Staff were most friendly and counldn't do enough for us.The town was an experience just a short walk or tuk tuk for about £1. Only down side a quite night life not for the young who want to party!. Ifyou are considering booking this hotel don't hesitate exceptional value for money. Try the safari trip but do the over night it's a long way.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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10  Thank midlands0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 5, 2011

Considering the price of this hotel i was lucky that i visited the place post rennovation and i must admit that they have done a pretty decent job. Rooms were clean and surely looked new. Wash rooms were the best i found in four different hotels i stayed Sri Lanka. The view from room balcony was amazing. The beach was nice and clean. The only negative i found were many ants near the minibar and inside wash room. Anyway this hotel was a more of a compromise as i couldnt find place in Serendip which a lot of locals told me is a better hotel...and yes, the hotel doesnt have Room Service!! despite of that it was a pretty decent and quiet hotel!

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with family
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Thank SyedAdeel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 5, 2011

Just back from The Surf Bentota after having a fab 2 weeks. The hotel has just been refurbished making the rooms very nice. The view from the rooms is breathtaking , The food was fantastic we were all inclusive and enjoyed it that much we didnt bother eating outside of the hotel. The staff in and around the hotel are brilliant very friendly and our room boy Ernga did a fab job of cleaning our room every day . The only minor moan i would have is the lack of atmosphere in the bar area but the Hotel is still undergoing refurbishment and it wouldnt put me off going back as we still enjoyed it.
Bentota itself has a few restaurants but no bars outside of the hotels , We visited the turtle rescue centre which was really worthwhile going to . We also visited local temples which were amazing.If staying at The Surf Hotel outside the gates are all the tuktuk drivers who will take you anywhere at good prices , We used a man called Wilson who was very good and took us everywhere we wanted to go . All in all we had a brilliant time and will definietly stay at The Surf again.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank philpeggs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2011

Great location, set right in the beach, fabulous views from the balcony. Recently renovated, to a high standard. Staff very friendly, great food! We spent 6 nights here after a week touring Sri Lanka. A few minor things still to be finished, ie: internet connection/phone/TV, may now be finished. Only a short walk to the town, or a tut tut ride, where there is a tourist information for more info on the area. Found some great bargains in the shops! Would recommend.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank ColinW1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 14, 2010

We stayed at the Lihiniya Surf Hotel on a Saturday because all the other places in the area around it were full as the well-heeled of Colombo leave the city over the weekend. It is therefore advisable to book the hotels you want to use in popular places in advance even if your intention is to keep your schedule flexible by not booking your accommodation in advance.
Since we were glad to have finally found a place to stay we did not view the room before checking in. The condition of the “hotel lobby" did however warn us not to expect too much in spite of the relatively hefty USD 110 we were charged. The price included half board but food is so cheap in Sri Lanka that the step up from B/B to H/B does not usually make a big difference in price (USD 10 – 20 per double room). Besides, buffets are generally reasonably priced and hardly ever a disappointment in Sri Lanka.
The receptionist showing us to the room pointed out that the hotel would close down for a 6-month makeover in two weeks (end July 2010), which further lowered our expectations. As some other feedback provider here rightfully pointed out, the corridors leading to our room were reminiscent of a (run down) sanatorium and indeed the room was quite shabby considering the approx. USD 100 price tag. In Thailand, a room of comparable standard and better cleanliness would cost no more than one fifth of what we paid.
The towels in the bathroom had holes in them. There was a Chinese brand TV with such bad sound quality that you would have needed subtitles… but you would probably not have been able to read them because the picture was about as blur as the sound was muffled. Someone must have been so frustrated that they sprayed the TV set with brown paint that was only removed from the screen.
There were – as is usual for any place in the Sri Lankan tropical lowlands and the sea side - lots of mosquitoes. There is nothing extraordinary about that. However, the treatment of the problem was quite unconventional. A hotel employee – equipped with a can of anti-insect spray – appears at the doorstep and offers to spray the room! What kills the critters cannot possibly be of any good to humans and we politely declined the offer and further advised him not to call on the room of our teenage daughters. Later, we found out that he did not follow our request… he did not even bother to knock on their door but just opened it with his passe-partout key!
What however topped it all was the fact that there was no complementary drinking water offered in the room, which is common practice in Sri Lanka – at least that was what we concluded after being offered two complimentary 500ml bottles in all the other places we stayed during our 14-day round-trip. I did notice that there was an empty flask in the room. However, in a country where even the locals routinely check whether the seals of bottled water are unbroken, visitors from western countries should probably not reduce their requirements below local standards by accepting water of unknown origin in a flask. When inquiring, my wife was told that bottled water would be chargeable (Rs 150 per liter) but that they would fill the flask for free. My wife informed them that offering water in a flask was not appropriate whereupon the hotel’s representative told her that the water in the flask would be from a bottle as well. We eventually purchased the water.
The good things about the hotel were that there was some friendly staff (namely one waiter and the bell boy) and that it was situated right on a nice stretch of the beach.
Obviously, the upcoming renovations can make a difference to the quality of accommodation. However, since beachfront property at Bentota was seriously affected by the Tsunami, one should think that at least the ground floor of the place (where our rooms were located) needed to be totally overhauled only 6 years ago. It certainly did not look that way.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank C073
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Surf Hotel

Address: Beach Road, Bentota 80500, Sri Lanka (Formerly Lihiniya Surf Hotel)
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Bentota
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Bentota
#5 Luxury Hotel in Bentota
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Bentota
#6 Spa Hotel in Bentota
#9 Romantic Hotel in Bentota
Price Range: $108 - $479 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Surf Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 95
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Surf Bentota Hotel Bentota
Lihiniya Surf Bentota
Hotel Lihiniya Surf
Lihiniya Surf Hotel

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